MEDINFO 2004 M. Fieschi et al. (Eds) Amsterdam: IOS Press © 2004 IMIA. All rights reserved
Readiness for Evidence-Based Practice: Information Literacy Needs of Nurses in the United States Annelle Tanner a, Susan Pierce b, Diane Pravikoff c
Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals, Office of Public Health, Region VI, Alexandria, LA, USA b College of Nursing, Northwestern State University, Shreveport, LA, USA c Cinahl Information Systems, Glendale, CA, USA Annelle Tanner, Susan Pierce, Diane Pravikoff safety,  further convolutes quality and cost effective outcomes and drives the need for finding means to better assure safety and quality. In spite of the shortage, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that nurses are the largest group of health care professionals  and, as such, are pivotal forces on the health care team. By virtue of the fact that nurses are the healthcare providers who spend the greatest percentage of time interacting with patients, they are positioned to influence positive outcomes and to serve as a first line of defense in prevention of negative outcomes. Ideally, nurses’ clinical decision-making should be supported by research-based evidence. Therefore, engaging in Evidence-Based Nursing Practice (EBNP) is critical. Nurse as a Knowledge Worker  The role of today’s nurse demands the use of finely tuned information management skills to provide best practice and effect positive patient outcomes. Much is expected of nurses in today’s health care environment. To meet these demands for accountability, nurses must change their practice paradigm to systematically incorporate current, best evidence into routine care and they must collect and interpret nursing sensitive data to identify information about the impact of nursing care on the patient and organizational outcomes. This must be done within the context of best evidence for clinical decision-making or EBNP. The result of failure to shift to EBNP is imposing. Not only can the cause and effect relationships between nursing interventions and quantifiable patient outcomes not be effectively measured and used to determine organizational quality benchmarks, but patient safety is ultimately compromised. Therefore, it is essential that nurses acquire demonstratable information literacy and computer literacy competencies. Information Literacy and EBNP Information literacy and computer literacy are essential to EBP. Both skill sets have been identified as core competencies for the basic or entry-level nurse.  While computer competency has been recently examined by others,  it is information literacy competency that is of interest to the authors of this paper. As discussed by Brown  and Friedland , the steps of EBP are: • • Develop a researchable clinical question Locate and retrieve relevant research evidence
Abstract In this paper U.S. nurses’ readiness to provide Evidence-Based Practice (EBP) as measured by their information literacy knowledge and skills is described. The Institute of Medicine directed health care providers to use EBP as a means to improve patient safety, efficiency and effectiveness of health care services. Information literacy has been identified as a nursing informatics competency for the basic nurse. As such, information literacy is an essential component in the application of EBP. The importance of developing information literacy skills is enhancement of the nurse’s ability to use current best available research literature in the conduct of EBP with subsequent improvement in nursing sensitive patient outcomes. This study describes the level of nurses’ information literacy knowledge and gaps in their skills for identifying, accessing, retrieving, evaluating and utilizing research evidence to provide best care for patients. The value of this study is to increase awareness among nurse administrators, educators, and clinicians of the need for information literacy education to enable evidence-based nursing...
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